US vows more anti-terror support for Kenya

Posted By: IANS
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Nairobi, June 22: The US Saturday pledged more support to Kenya's counter-terrorism efforts and urged the local political leaders to unite to help tackle security challenges in the country.

Kenya's future and the battle against extremism require strong efforts on security while holding firm to shared values of democracy, justice, human rights, rule of law, and economic progress, Xinhua quoted US Ambassador to Kenya Robert F. Godec as saying.

A string of terror attacks in recent months has culminated with the mass evacuation of tourists in the coastal city of Mombasa following twin attacks in Mpeketoni town, which left at least 60 people dead and many injured earlier this year.

Known Muslim extremist group Al-Shabaab was responsible for the attack, and has been a cell of the Al Qaeda terror network since 2012.

Godec said Washington has been working alongside Nairobi and other governments in the region, to assist Kenya and East Africa to counter the threat posed by terrorist organisations.

The envoy said the US has provided 127 million dollars in terms of security assistance since 2011 to support counter- terrorism and border security programmes and for the procurement of aircraft, patrol boats, and equipment upgrades.

"We have funded over 45 million dollars in civilian counterterrorism assistance to Kenya over the last four years, making Kenya the fourth largest recipient of such assistance worldwide," he said.

The American envoy also clarified that the embassy in Nairobi has not closed and is not closing due to increased terror threats in the country.


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